This week is for celebrations – whatever your celebration may be!

Mediterranean Appetizer Platter

Perhaps it’s Easter or Passover you’re commemorating this week, or maybe it’s the grass turning from a brittle straw beige to green.  After this winter, the upward inch of the thermometer is a good enough excuse for a celebration, and with that celebration comes food.

Roast Lemon Yogurt Lamb

Roast Lemon Yogurt Lamb and Couscous Salad

My family celebrates Easter, and I’m happily stuck in the same recipe rut I’ve been stuck in for years.  Not the expected ham, but the expected Roast Lemon Yogurt Lamb. Not the expected sweet potatoes and marshmallows, but the expected Couscous with Eggplant and Feta. 

(If you’re serving ham or poultry, this recipe for an Asparagus, Gruyere and Wild Mushroom Bread Pudding is sensational; all the more so because it may be made a day in advance.)

Beet & Yogurt Dip with Goat Cheese & Hazlenuts

Beet & Yogurt Dip with Goat Cheese & Hazlenuts

Always a Mediterranean Appetizer Platter (pictured top) works well for us; if my daughter’s visiting from Chicago it substitutes for supper the night of her arrival. If I’m feeding a large group, it’s a natural prelude to my Mediterranean-inspired menu. Another easy Spring-ish appetizer, that could also fill-in for salad, would be Proscuitto-Wrapped Asparagus with Blue Cheese.

I’ll buy my scratch-made hummus, grape leaves and Baba Ganouch, as always, from the Mediterranean Market, which saves me several hours in the kitchen. But I’ll make my Beet and Yogurt dip – there’s nothing I could buy that comes close and I’m crazy about the color.

Pistachio Ice Cream with Baklava

Pistachio Ice Cream with Baklava

Unless someone offers dessert, I’m going to serve store-bought Lemon Sorbet.  Last year I made homemade Pistachio Ice Cream (photographed left), and if you’ve the energy and tools – the recipe is the essence of buttery pistachio.

And then there’s the day after Easter – what to do with leftover eggs. My chicks have flown the nest, but I still crave egg dishes the day after Easter. Missing my kids, and the hoop-la surrounding the holiday, egg dishes are comforting.

Polish-Stuffed Easter Eggs

Polish-Stuffed Easter Eggs

Here’s a clever recipe my neighbor, Krystyna, shared for Polish-Stuffed Easter Eggs. My mother always made Curried Creamed Eggs with Asparagus after Easter. Stuffed Eggs Florentine are another possibility.  I’ll see what I’m craving on Monday.

Whatever your plans, or absence of, I sincerely hope your week is lovely, and that you can share that love with family, friends, or in your own meditations during this advent of Spring.

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